Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Power of Information by Yewande Okoya

With recent developments unfolding day by day in all parts of the world, knowledge through information sharing is paramount in order to educate, inform and address several issues that longs for explanations.

BAOBAB for Women's Human Rights will continue to disseminate information to all (especially women) who desire to be the change. Individually, we need to break that chain of mediocrity, releasing ourselves from whatever dares to cause a barrier in knowing and addressing issues that affects our livelihood.

It is time we arm ourselves with the weapon that cannot be destroyed by anyone or anything except we allow it. This weapon is INFORMATION!!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Child Abuse and Neglect - by Bilkis Olagoke

Child abuse and neglect according to the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) is defined as "Any recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker, which results in the death, serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse, or exploitation, or an act or failure to act which presents an imminent risk of serious harm"

The issue of child abuse and neglect has now been recognized as a worldwide problem. Children are the most vulnerable people on the surface of the earth and they are frequently the defenseless victims of the most degrading abuses.
Children are usually abused by someone in their immediate family circle. This can include parent, brothers or sisters, baby sitters or other family adults and in some cases strangers.

There are different forms of child abuse, they are:
  • Child labour which includes street hawking, street begging, domestic servant and commercial sexual exploitation of children.
  • Physical abuse/neglect includes striking, kicking, burning, or biting the child, or any action that result in physical impairment of the child. deny of eduction and medical health care
  • Sexual abuse - examples are incest, rape, prostitution, paedophilia and sexual harassment
  • Emotional abuse / neglect also known as psychological maltreatment includes spurning terrorizing, isolation denying emotional responsiveness among others
There are laws protecting the rights of children. for example in Nigeria we have The Nigerian Labour Act, Laws of the Federal Nigeria 1990 CAP 198, The criminal code act, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990 CAP 77, the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the child (1989).

Despite the laudable actions by countries to improve the lives of the children by passing legislation to protect them, there is a need for parents, guardians, teachers and adults in charge of children to do more in terms of protecting these children from various abuses.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Debate over the Use of the Word ALLAH - by Asabe Audu

Recently both CNN and Al-Jazeera news reported the religious violence in Malaysia, which was caused by the court ruling allowing a Roman Catholic newspaper to use the word ALLAH to describe God.
I found this news item to be especially interesting, as a Hausa/Fulani Christian from Northern Nigerian, Arabic has the most influence on my language Hausa, which is spoken by over 24 million people and a second language to about 15 million or more, has borrowed numerous words over centuries of cultural trade with Arabs. In our Hausa Bible the word for God is Allah.
The word ALLAH has been used pre Islamic period by Christian Arabs to describe God. ALLAH is not an exclusive preserve for just Muslims. What I can deduce here is that there should be a demarcation between language and religion.

Female police officers - by Wunmi akinbodunse

Inspector General of the Nigerian Police Force gave a mandate to evict married female police officers living in police barracks with their civilian husbands from the police barracks. The mandate is based on the African belief that a man should provide everything for his wife including accommodation. This development is disturbing as it discriminates against female police officers since their male counterparts live with their spouses in police barracks. It is also worrisome that the Inspector General of Police whose duty it is to protect victims of human rights violations is spearheading such discriminatory policy. Nigeria is a signatory to various human rights instruments and a common thread that runs through all these instruments is the principles of equality and non-discrimination. It behooves agents of the State and non-state actors to uphold the said principles.

THE NIGERIA NAVY TO PAY A HEFTY SUM OF N100Million (Justice Prevails) by Wunmi Akinbodunse

Thank God for the democratic dispensation, the Lagos State Judiciary has demonstrated its capacity to deliver justice to the oppressed and rights of its citizens are no longer abused with impunity. Justice Oke recently ordered Rear Admiral Harry Arogundade and the Nigerian Navy to pay the sum of N100 Million as damages for assaulting a young woman Uzoma Okere and her colleague, Abdullahi Abdulazea on November 3, 2008 for allegedly obstructing Arogundade’s convoy which was caught up in traffic.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

OUR BODY: OUR BEING, OUR RIGHTS by Wunmi Akinbodunse

In celebration of the African Women’s Health & Rights day on Feb 4th, 2010, BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights had a sticker & sensitization campaign at Ojota market to educate and sensitize traders on the need for women to be aware of their sexual and health rights (dangers of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), need to use birth controls etc).
Fliers & leaflets on reproductive health rights were distributed at the rally. The campaign was done in the three major languages of Nigeria, which stimulated diverse reactions from the crowd, women, embraced the initiative, while most men had issues with the fact that women have as much rights as men.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Dating Abuse

Dating abuse is a pattern of violent behavior-physical, emotional, or sexual-by one partner in a dating relationship toward the other partner. Dating abuse may be:


* Pinching, shoving, slapping, grabbing, etc.
* Intimidation (blocking doors, throwing objects)
* Use of weapons


* Unwanted touching
* Forced sexual activities
* Pressure to have sex
* Threats to find someone who will do what he or she wants sexually


* Put-downs, insults, and rumors
* Threats
* Possessiveness
* Overdependency
* Huge mood swings
* Humiliation
* Accusations
* Withdrawal of attention
* Isolation from friends or activities

You might be thinking, "I've never experienced anything as serious as being punched!" But hold on a sec.

In general, guys and girls don't usually start hitting their girlfriend or boyfriend out of the blue. It usually starts after a history of verbal and emotional abuse, which is far more likely to occur among young teens. If nothing is done about that abuse, it's likely to become more severe and start including sexual and physical abuse.

source: http://www.chooserespect.org/scripts/teens/datingabuse.asp

Video: http://www.chooserespect.org/scripts/materials/videos/video_13min.asp